Autobiography of Mary E Wilson (9) – Making Friends – 1930

At this point in time, Mary seems to be very happy. We’ll find out tomorrow if it lasts for quite a while or is just a fleeting moment.



I took an extended course in nursing so that kept me busy four nights a week. Dr Sprague commended me on my efforts and advised me to go into training. I loved nursing but realized that this course would be the only chance I would have in my nursing career. My mother still dominated my life.

We did so much moving, or “flitting”, as the English people called it. When my father worked, we moved into a nice flat. When he lost his job we moved into a cheaper one. It seems as though, at that time, we were “flitted” on an average of twice a year. One flat on Asylum Street had no direct electricity because we used gas mantles. It seemed as though in all those years, I had never had my own room. I always slept on a couch in the living room.

At this time, I was not feeling well so my mother insisted I go to a doctor and he said I was run down and anemic, and insisted I drink two glasses of port wine a day. It is amazing that I did not become a ”wino”. I do remember I had to hide the bottle so my father would not find it.

I had become acquainted with a group of girls and we started our own club. We called it the “Stitch and Chatter Club”. We did very little stitching but we really did have a good time with each other and we remained close for a lot of years. None of us at this time had boyfriends, so we attended dances together, joined the Y.W.C.A., attended dance class and gymnastics.

I realized that this was the happiest time of my life..a a carefree, nice part of my life. Celso, Ruth, Irene, Myrtle, Alberta and I were friends even during our married lives, when we were all raising children.

Jim now had a steady job in a garage as a mechanic and Arthur was a lace weaver.

When I was 18, I started dating, but I was very wary of boys. I think I was shy and insecure and a little nervous of American boys.

My mother seemed to dominate the whole family. All events such as Christmas, Easter and birthdays were planned by my mother. The whole clan was always at our house for any event at all.

Tomorrow, the next chapter in the continuing story of Mary E Wilson and her new life in America.

Check out the new addition to an earlier post when Mary arrives at Ellis Island. Her granddaughter and great-grandchildren just went to visit Ellis Island and see what they found.…w-york-city-1925/

If you’re enjoying these stories, why not share them with a friend or two. They might appreciate it.

Judy Hardy

One thought on “Autobiography of Mary E Wilson (9) – Making Friends – 1930

  1. Reblogged this on Musings of a Penpusher and commented:
    The story of an English girl starting life in America.

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